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Rori Paloski

Spotted Salamander (Ambystoma maculatum)

Spotted Salamander photo.
Photo © Dan Nedrelo
  • Family: Ambystomatidae (Mole salamanders)
  • Status: Common
  • Size: 4 to 7 inches

range map

Species range

The dorsal (back) side of the body is generally black or dark brown with prominent yellow spots along the body, often appearing in two relatively distinct rows before merging into one on the tail. Often there are two orange spots at the base of the head. Its sides have obvious costal grooves and the ventral (belly) area is light gray. Spotted salamanders prefer closed-canopy hardwood forests with heavy ground-layer vegetation because of their cooler microclimates and higher humidities. They spend considerable time underground during the warmer months and can sometimes be found under rotting logs or in humus during spring and fall. Spotted salamanders eat earthworms, mollusks and arthropods.


Spotted Salamander  Photo

Photo by Robert Hay, WDNR.

Spotted Salamander  Photo

Photo © D. Vogt.

Spotted Salamander  Photo

Photo © Dan Nedrelo.

Last revised: Tuesday, December 22, 2020